In sea coasts, the term "inlet" usually refers to the actual connection between a bay and the ocean and is often called an "entrance" or a recession in the shore of a sea, lake, or river. A certain kind of inlet created by glaciation is a fjord, typically but not always in mountainous coastlines and also in montane lakes.
Complexes of large inlets or fjords may be called sounds, e.g., Puget Sound, Howe Sound, Karmsund (sund is Scandinavian for "sound"). Some fjord-type inlets are called canals, e.g., Portland Canal, Lynn Canal, Hood Canal, and some are channels, e.g., Dean Channel and Douglas Channel.
Tidal amplitude, wave intensity, and wave direction are all factors that influence sediment flux in inlets
- "inlet". Dictionary.com. Ask.com. Retrieved July 6, 2014.
- Chen, Jia-Lin; Hsu, Tian-Jian; Shi, Fengyan; Raubenheimer, Britt; Elgar, Steve (2015-06-01). "Hydrodynamic and sediment transport modeling of New River Inlet (NC) under the interaction of tides and waves". Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans. 120 (6): 4028–4047. ISSN 2169-9291. doi:10.1002/2014JC010425.